Let’s start with the good news. US now officially recognize cachaça as a Brazilian spirit. What’s the big deal? Well, from now on, cachaça is not anymore a type of rum, but a true spirit in itself. Look at the bottom of the Leblon bottle sold in the US, it says Brazilian Rum… But, that won’t be needed anymore thanks to this recent ruling from the Alcohol and Tobacco Tax and Trade Bureau (into force on 11th April). And actually, this is primarily due to the efforts of… Leblon whose lobbying energy included a petition of over 300,000 signatures to the Congress! Also, last April, Brazil officially recognized Bourbon and Tennessee whiskeys as US products; it probably played its part…
And now, the bad news is for the largest US brewer, the well-known Budweiser (part of Anheuser-Busch InBev, the world leader). Several lawsuits, seeking a class action status, across the U.S (California, Pennsylvania and New Jersey) are claiming that the plaintiffs’ favourite beer (and other brands such as Bud Ice, Bud Light Platinum, Michelob, Michelob Ultra, Hurricane High Gravity Lager, King Cobra, Busch Ice, Black Crown and Bud Light Lime) has been watered-down to save money! Allegedly, former employees have provided information indicating that alcohol content has been cut down by 3 to 8%, by adding water just before bottling. The company refuted the claims as “groundless”.
And that’s yet another judiciary turmoil for the American queen of beer who’s already struggling with Czech brewer Budweiser Budvar for the brand name ownership.
#YR – Yann Rousseau
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